Spinal cord stimulation (SCS) is the most commonly used technique of neurostimulation. It involves the stimulation of the spinal cord and is therefore used to treat chronic pain. The existing esophageal catheters are used for temperature monitoring during an electrophysiology study with ablation and transesophageal echocardiography. The aim of the study was to model the spine and new esophageal electrodes for the transesophageal electrical pacing of the spinal cord, and to integrate them in the Offenburg heart rhythm model for the static and dynamic simulation of transesophageal neurostimulation. The modeling and simulation were both performed with the electromagnetic and thermal simulation software CST (Computer Simulation Technology, Darmstadt). Two new esophageal catheters were modelled as well as a thoracic spine based on the dimensions of a human skeleton. The simulation of directed transesophageal neurostimulation is performed using the esophageal balloon catheter with an electric pacing potential of 5 V and a trapezoidal signal. A potential of 4.33 V can be measured directly at the electrode, 3.71 V in the myocardium at a depth of 2 mm, 2.68 V in the thoracic vertebra at a depth of 10 mm, 2.1 V in the thoracic vertebra at a depth of 50 mm and 2.09 V in the spinal cord at a depth of 70 mm. The relation between the voltage delivered to the electrodes and the voltage applied to the spinal cord is linear. Virtual heart rhythm and catheter models as well as the simulation of electrical pacing fields and electrical sensing fields allow the static and dynamic simulation of directed transesophageal electrical pacing of the spinal cord. The 3D simulation of the electrical sensing and pacing fields may be used to optimize transesophageal neurostimulation.
© 2019 by Walter de Gruyter Berlin/Boston
This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 Public License.